- Credit: RMG Photography
The dinosaurs are coming! And this time they are joined by mammoths!
Stunning sculptures are stalking the streets of Norfolk this summer.
The fabulously decorated dinosaurs which stomped through Norwich last year have been joined by more of their tribe – plus 24 steppe mammoths at holiday hotspots across Norfolk.
Each T. rex and mammoth is a unique work of art, painted by artists with designs inspired by everything from local landmarks to Sir David Attenborough.
The towering Sirdavidsaurus rex has been created by artist Faye Rackham of Norwich as a tribute to Sir David and is alive with many of the flowers and animals he loves, as well as species named for him and critically endangered wildlife. Faye’s fabulously intricate design includes 56 different species covering the dinosaur and she said that being autistic helped her focus on the tiny details of the art work.
Sirdavidsaurus is one of 55 T. rexes across the city and are joined by a trail of steppe mammoths around the county. They can be spotted from King’s Lynn to Great Yarmouth, and Cromer and Holt to the south of the county, including tourist hotspots and visitor attractions including Holkham, Hemsby, Pensthorpe and The Broads.
The mammoths have a special link with Norfolk and Margaret’s Mammoth at West Runton is named for Margaret Hems who discovered the largest and most complete mammoth skeleton ever found in the UK in the cliffs at West Runton. The sculpture shape itself was designed by Norfolk sculptor Sally Adams, with advice from mammoth expert David Waterhouse of the Norfolk Museums Service.
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Her blank mammoth-shaped canvases have been covered with bees, trees and constellations. Trail project manager Pete Marron said: “Every year we are astounded by the creativity, passion and detail depicted on the sculptures. This year is no exception with themes such as the natural world and environment, science, innovation and technology. Some sculptures tell stories of Norfolk and Norwich, local landmarks and characters. Others are an exploration of mediums such as street art and graffiti, mosaics and textures, or a representation of contemporary and modern art. Each sculpture has its own message, be it hope, positivity, inclusivity or diversity and yet the beauty of the trail is that they’re all open to personal interpretation; there’s a take-home message for everyone.”
The decorated dinosaurs include Daddy of all Dinosaurs which has been covered in prehistoric creatures ranging from flying pterosaurs to undersea giants, by artist Jo Fiske, and Yuuki by Rachael Butler of north Norfolk which contrasts beautiful creatures and landscapes on one side of the T.rex with a world blighted by forest fires and pollution on the other. Yuuki, the Japanese word for courage, is intended to encourage people to protect the environment and give them hope for the future.
Tracking down the prehistoric predators is free but the trail is also expected to raise many thousands of pounds for Norfolk-based family charity Break. The sculptures will be auctioned at Norwich Cathedral on September 28.
Over the years the GoGoDiscover sculptures have raised more than a million pounds for Break. This year’s T.rexes and mammoths are the latest stars in the series of trails delivered in partnership with Wild in Art, to raise money for Break, beginning with elephants in 2008, followed by gorillas in 2013, dragons in 2015, hares in 2018 and dinosaurs in 2021.
Pete, who oversees the trails for Break, said: “A great deal of our work focuses on helping young adults who, on turning 18, face mammoth expectations as they leave care system. They’re asked to leap from the stability and shelter of the place they call home to living independently. Some of these young people live on their own or have no family around to support them – Break promises to be that family.”
The prehistoric trails of dinosaurs and mammoths run throughout the summer until Saturday September 10 and people can also support Break, and locate and identify all 79 animal artworks, by picking up a trail map (suggested donation £1) from venues including The Forum, The Royal Arcade, Jarrold and Break shops or by downloading the new GoGoDiscover app (£1.99).
There are also souvenir stickers to collect and fill a special sticker book - with tokens for stickers printed in the Eastern Daily Press, Norwich Evening News and Archant's paid-for weekly Norfolk papers.